Experimental music, photography, and adventures

Archive for February, 2010

Do you know Le Winter?

Tuesday, February 16th, 2010

This winter is starting to get to me a bit. We’ve had an unusual amount of snow, for Bloomington.  We have probably 10 inches of snow on the ground right now; normally, I’d be excited about this, but I’ve been having less fun with the snow, in the past week or so.

But, I think I figured out what the problem is. I’m annoyed with the snow because I haven’t spent enough time in it! Aside from one ride on Saturday, my only riding has been in the form of commutes. So, the only time I’ve been out in the snow, it’s been an impediment to getting to my destination, rather than something I take the time to enjoy.

Riding in the winter is like riding up hills: you have to fully embrace it in order to enjoy it, and the more you do it, the more comfortable you become with it. Some unexpected things came up last weekend that prevented me from getting out and enjoying the snow much. Hopefully, I’ll have more time this weekend, and I can get out and ride in the snow, and relish the opportunity, rather than simply trudging through it. In the meantime, I’m trying to keep a positive attitude, and I might even try to squeeze in a night ride one of these days. The darkness is really more of an impediment to riding after work than the snow is.

We got the biggest snow of the year on Monday. Again, schools and many businesses were closed. As usual, I rode my bicycle to work. And I did have fun with it. On my way to work, the snow was so deep in places that my shoes were dipping down into the snow as I pedaled, and snow was shooting up into my brakes.

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After work, I had icicles hanging from my saddle, and I had to dig my bike out.

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But, that was nothing compared to what people who drove to campus had to deal with. Check out the cars on the side of the road — they had a lot of digging to do before they could get out. All that snow had fallen since the morning.

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When I arrived back at home, I had to re-bury my bike in a mound of snow.

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Rob could barely walk in the stuff. That’s a 70-pound dog, legs completely buried.

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Every day when I get to work, the bike racks are more buried. I have to lift my bicycle onto a mount of snow over a foot deep to lock it to the rack.

Hopefully, this’ll let up soon. I love snow, but I’d say we have enough for now.

CIBA Swap Meet

Tuesday, February 16th, 2010

On Sunday, I headed up near Indianapolis to check out the annual CIBA (Central Indiana Bicycling Association) Swap Meet. The trip was successful in that I got some great deals. There were things I was hoping to find that I didn’t find, but some unexpected deals balanced that out nicely. Behold:

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  • SIDI Bullet 2 MTB Shoes
  • Sugoi wool baselayer
  • Canari short-sleeved jersey
  • Brooks leather mudflap and handlebar tape (these were the best deals I found, at $5 and $20 respectively).
  • Well-used, but nearly free, Zefal hpX4 frame pump

Surprisingly, everything I got except for the pump was new. But the prices were too good to pass up. If I knew more about bikes, I would’ve been able to take advantage of more used deals on components and such, but I often don’t know exactly what I would need. Alas.

I also ran into a few people who I knew and got to meet others who I’d heard of, but never met personally. There was a great crowd there. ICS, Nebo Ridge Bicycles, and other Indianapolis shops were well-represented.

Friendship ride … with snow

Monday, February 15th, 2010

I didn’t get to do much riding over the weekend. On Saturday, a server crashed, resulting in some unexpected, but critical, work for a client. I helped get them back up and running, but it took up a good portion of my day.

I did manage to get out for a little ride, but only about 14 miles … I was hoping to ride 30-40. I rode the Friendship Route, which includes a bit of gravel. Many of these scenes will likely look familiar to regular readers of my blog … only this time, they have several inches of snow. The roads were mostly clear-ish, but the gravel parts were quite snowy.

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